March 22nd, 2016
Image Courtesy: newsx offshoreenergytoday
An Indian sailor who was kidnapped in Africa during the hijacking of ship Maximus has been rescued and will reach India on Sunday night. The ship Maximus owned by Dubai based warm seas company was travelling with a crew of 18 members, out of which 11 were Indian seamen, including the ship captain. The ship was hijacked on February 11 by pirates off the coast of Abidjan in Ivory Coast. According to the reports of the Indian minister of External Affairs, Rohan is safe and has spoken to his family members.
The Indian mission in Ivory Coast alerted the country’s authorities on February 12 besides alerting the Indian missions in Ghana and Nigeria as the vessel was suspected to be sailing in that direction. On India’s request, Ghana’s naval ships operating in the region were tasked to track the ship. The pirates changed the name of the vessel to MT Elwins and it then was followed by the mother ship of the pirates.The vessel, steered southwards and entered international waters towards Nigeria on February 14 instead of entering the waters of Benin. India took up up the issue with the Nigerian authorities and the Nigerian navy immediately launched operations to locate the vessel. Five Nigerian ships were deployed for the operation and the hijacked vessel was finally intercepted by the Nigerian navy on the evening of February 19. During the operation, one pirate was killed and six were apprehended.No crew member sustained injury during the operation. Sixteen crew members, including 10 Indians, were rescued by the Nigerian navy. However, two crew members Ruparelia and a Pakistani were taken hostage by the pirates when they disengaged.
Why does piracy happen?
Piracy just doesn’t happen for the money, but because of their spirit, hunger for adventures, dangers and fame. The life on the open sea has never been easy. A pirate ship was no place for the weak ones, but being a pirate gave them a total freedom to do what they pleased, whatever they want and whenever they want.
Piracy prone zone
Most of the reports of piracy comes from the water around Indonesia and Somalia. In 2014, there were 245 pirate attacks reported all across the world. Reports surfaced that in 2011, the Somalian pirates had held 1,206 captives, out of which 35 died. All the captives had to suffer violent torture from being locked in freezers to being burned with cigarettes.
The Logical Indian appreciates the external affairs ministry for the another great work done. The quick efforts and coordination of the ministry has played its part in saving valuable lives. We are delighted for the lives saved and thanks everyone involved including the Indian foreign ministry and foreign missions of other countries who were involved in the rescue effort.